Read Disney Declassified: Tales of Real Life Disney Scandals, Sex, Accidents and Deaths Online

Authors: Aaron Goldberg

Tags: #Taled of Real Life Disney Scandals, #Accidents and Deaths, #Sex

Disney Declassified: Tales of Real Life Disney Scandals, Sex, Accidents and Deaths (2 page)

BOOK: Disney Declassified: Tales of Real Life Disney Scandals, Sex, Accidents and Deaths
12.73Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

With Bill’s shady business deals revealed, which the other co-trustees were unaware of, Team Michelle decided to sue to have Bill removed from Michelle’s trust. Interestingly, Bill didn’t deny the dealings. He said he had permission and submitted a document to the court that showed Michelle’s and Brad’s signatures giving him permission to make the deals. The deals were actually quite lucrative for the trust, $163 million dollars lucrative to be exact— a fact Bill says everyone fails to mention in their legal case.

As the legal case proceeded, it was determined that the signatures Bill offered as proof of consent for the deals from Brad and Michelle were forged. A handwriting expert was brought in and it was determined that Michelle’s signature had been taken from another document, something for which Bill didn’t have an answer.

Bill’s legal fight to stay on as a trustee on his children’s trusts didn’t last much longer. Blaming concerns for his health, he stepped down from being a trustee, but not without a parting gift. As a settlement, he will be paid $500,000 a year for the rest of his life, exclusively out of Brad’s trust. In light of everything that happened when Michelle was critically ill, the attention turned to her twin brother, Brad, and Bill’s influence over him.

Michelle and her aunt, Walt’s other daughter, Diane Disney Miller, were concerned about Brad’s welfare. They wondered if he was under too much control from his father and stepmother. Michelle and Diane filed legal documents in Maricopa, Arizona probate court claiming they feared Brad was being isolated, not allowed to go out or receive phone calls. They questioned if he (and his $1 million yearly trust allowance) was being held captive by Bill and his wife.

Brad apparently suffered from developmental disabilities and lived in a house next door to his father. Michelle and Diane wanted to make sure Brad was there willingly and could do as he pleased. The duo urged the court to assess his state and the situation to determine his well-being, and determine if he was being manipulated financially or mentally.

They suggested to the court that if Brad did need care or a guardian, perhaps it should be independent from his father. Their petition showed that in 2006 Brad had filed court papers wanting his father and stepmother to become his guardians as he had developmental disabilities, which affected his competency for receiving the funds from his trust. Michelle and Diane thought this adoption might be monetarily motivated. 

On Brad’s 35
birthday in 2005, his trust indicated that he could receive a payment of $20 million. The trustees, Bill included, voted 4-0 not to disperse this money to him. Yet, five years later in 2010, another large distribution was due and the trustees voted 3-1 against the payment; the one vote “for” came from Bill. Bill indicated his son was doing better than five years before and was now capable of managing his money—although the papers filed in 2006 declared otherwise. Brad refuted all of the above claims by his sister and aunt. He claimed he loved his father and stepmother, and was happy where he was living.

Brad was so irritated by the situation and the intrusion into his life, he initiated adoption proceedings, again, to have his stepmother adopt him. Although Michelle still contends this was money-motivated and just another situation created to gain control over Brad and his money—at one point, there were even claims of sexual shenanigans going on between Brad and his stepsister, Sherry’s daughter, in an attempt to gain control over him and his trust.

In the end, it appears as though everyone got what they wanted. Michelle got her financial freedom, Bill received some more money, Brad wasn’t bothered anymore by the courts, and probably a few attorneys bought new cars with the legal fees accrued from some in-fighting over real Disney dollars.

So what to make of all of this on a deeper, voyeuristic level? Who knows? There was a lot of money at stake from a grandfather long gone. There’s a very old saying: “money is the root of all evil.” There’s another prophetic saying: “whoever said money is the root of all evil does not have any.” If nothing else, it makes all of us regarding our own family dysfunctions feel a bit better!

This next story may seem all too familiar for frequent visitors to any of the Disney theme parks, especially when the parks are very crowded, but accident reports submitted in both Florida and California have shown incidents with guests driving scooters/power chairs into other guests. Usually the incidents are harmless, but back in 1995 the outcome was different. This time, the person behind the wheel had some consequences to deal with. 

Back in August of 1995, thirty-five-year-old Katrina, who suffers from cerebral palsy, was visiting Disneyland in her motorized scooter, just as she did countless times over the previous four years. However, this day would end differently for her, for she lost the use of her beloved Disneyland annual pass for one month, as a repeat offender of speeding and hitting walking guests.

This case of reckless driving Disneyland-style happened on Main Street when she was driving at an estimated speed of 4.5 miles per hour and bumped into someone who complained. Katrina denied ever hitting the person, but she admitted she might have been driving faster than usual, as she wanted to get across Main Street to the Pocahontas show before the
Lion King
Parade blocked her way. Disney spokesman John McClintock said this was the third time Katrina was cited for speeding and something had to be done. The yearly pass she saved up for out of her monthly social security payments was put on suspension. 

This next story takes us over to the Walt Disney World police blotter. In July 2012, Dario, a forty-one-year-old physician vacationing with his family from Italy, was arrested for allegedly kicking his three-year-old son in the face. The little guy was crying and buckled into his stroller in front of the Mexico Pavilion at EPCOT’s World Showcase, when the incident happened.

 According to the witness's statements in the arrest report, the doctor was arguing with his wife and children in front of the pavilion. The next thing people witnessed was Dario kicking his son in the face, as the child’s mother was screaming “no” repeatedly. The little tyke’s left eye was swollen with a cut and bruising around it. An EPCOT employee went up to the child and noticed the child bleeding and crying hysterically. The cast member contacted police.

Dario and his family did not speak English but, through a translator, both parents told a different story than what nearby people witnessed. In turn, they blamed their oldest son. The family wouldn’t allow the child to be taken to the hospital as the father deemed him okay after checking his son’s injuries. The father was then promptly taken to jail.

Another heart wrenching story involving a child took place one Saturday night in November of 1997 at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. Kathleen walked into the ladies' restroom in Fantasyland around 9:00
. She noticed blood on the floor and heard a whimpering sound. Kathleen opened the stall door and discovered a newborn baby in the toilet bowl. The baby was feet first in the toilet with her head barely above the waterline and with the umbilical cord around her neck. The good citizen sprang into action, grabbed the baby and started to scream for help. Another woman quickly gave up her sweatshirt to wrap around the baby and get the cold toilet water off the newborn.

Sometimes fate works in mysterious ways, even in horrific situations like this one. Just a few feet away, Kenneth and his family just got off Space Mountain when he heard screams. One of his instincts kicked in, the instinct of a family physician. Dr. Kenneth saw a woman holding a baby, not an uncommon site at Walt Disney World. This baby was blue in color and still had a placenta and umbilical cord attached.

Yep, a woman gave birth in the bathroom and fled the scene. The good doctor sprang into action, putting the baby in a head-down position to hear if she was breathing; which she was, but barely, and with a very faint pulse. Improvising with whatever pseudo-medical instruments he could get his hands on, he used a pen to clear the mucus in her throat, opening her airway so she could breathe. Next he took a shoelace to tie off the umbilical cord.

Moments later, rescue workers arrived, covered her in a blanket and off she went to the hospital. The newborn's body temperature was only 91 degrees when she was admitted to the hospital. The hospital kept her in a warmer, stabilized her and named her Baby Jasmine after the Disney movie
. After five days in the hospital, Jasmine was doing well and had hundreds of families inquiring about adopting her. She was released into the custody of the Florida Department of Children and Families for the time being.

With Jasmine thriving, there was still a bigger mystery; who in their right mind would do such a thing? Who could leave a newborn in the toilet to die and go on about their business, let alone in one of the most family centric places on earth? Speculation from authorities thought it was most likely a teenage girl concealing her pregnancy. The teen probably couldn’t reveal her situation to family and just happened to give birth while she was at the park and panicked. Interestingly, as busy as the parks can be, there were no witnesses that came forward claiming to see anything.

Three months would pass before the mother to baby Jasmine was found. Jasmine’s mother wasn’t a teen at all, nor was she panicked at the notion of giving birth. Jasmine’s mom was a forty-three-year-old mother of eight (nine including Jasmine) on vacation from the Philippines. Madona was vacationing at Walt Disney World with family members for nine days.

Even her own family members initially had no idea she was pregnant, as she was overweight. Eventually, Madona’s sister-in-law from New Jersey contacted the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. She revealed the information about the missing and negligent mother in February of 1998. Officials then ran DNA tests to verify the relation to Jasmine. Madona’s sister-in-law stated that in the days after she gave birth, Madona continued her trip as if nothing ever happened; even commenting about what kind of a terrible mother and person could abandon a baby like that.  

After the sister-in-law's call, authorities in Florida prepared an arrest warrant for Madona, seeking to charge her with attempted murder and aggravated child abuse and sought to extradite her back to Orlando—the extradition never happened. As for Jasmine, the sister-in-law was already the adoptive mother to one of Madona’s children and baby Jasmine joined the family with her older biological sibling.

The next tale involving a baby doesn’t take place at Walt Disney World. However, the theme park was the catalyst for the horrendous act. In September of 2011, thirty-three-year-old Bridget of Delaware gave birth to a baby boy. Instead of being overwhelmed with joy for her new bundle of joy, she sold her month-old son for $15,000 so she could take her other two sons to Walt Disney World. Bridget’s grandmother overheard her granddaughter's twisted Disney plan and tipped off authorities. She told them Bridget was going to “sell her newborn son to a homosexual couple for $15,000.”

A short time later, police arrested both mother and baby buyer. Bridget eventually pled guilty but mentally ill and was sentenced to five years in prison. The judge suspended her sentence for eighteen months of intensive mental health probation. 

Another unsettling story with Walt Disney World as the backdrop happened in late June 2000 at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort. What was shaping up to be just another day at work for Rafael, ended up turning into a nightmare he could have never imagined. Rafael was towards the end of his shift as a waiter at the Boardwalk Inn. He had one more room service delivery to make, four beers for Room 2326. The guest in the room had ordered room service four times before one o'clock in the afternoon; actually the person in the room had ordered room service nine times over the previous two days. When Rafael stepped in to make his delivery to the room, he was met with a pistol-whip to the head from a .357 magnum. The next eleven hours were spent as a hostage with a gun pointed to his head as he prayed for his life.

Unfortunately, Rafael’s delivery put him right in middle of a very dangerous situation and serious marital strife. The situation involved thirty-nine-year-old Bismark, who believed his wife, a former employee at the Boardwalk Resort, was having an affair with a room service waiter named Alex.

Bismark apparently paid another Boardwalk employee for information about Alex and his phone number. In late June, Bismark called Alex and left threatening messages on his voicemail. He told him he would beat him up or even kill him if he didn’t provide information about his wife and children. He knew they were having an affair and he wanted to speak with his family. After receiving no response from Alex, Bismark devised a plan to abduct and murder his wife’s love interest. He bartered his services as a landscaper to a woman who agreed to register the hotel room in her name, so he wouldn’t be identified. Bismark checked into the hotel with his four-year-old son on June 27

 By June 29
, after repeated orders to room service and no delivery from Alex, who panicked after the threats and took the days off, Bismark became desperate and took hostage the next waiter that came to his room. Bismark was frustrated and needed to communicate with his wife and Rafael was the one who was going to make it happen, unluckily for Rafael, who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

As it turned out, there was no “other man” or love affair involving Alex. Bismark was grasping at anything to communicate with his estranged wife and the children. The whole story was a fantasy, as Alex and Bismark’s wife had never met each other. What wasn’t a fantasy was the gun directed at Rafael when he was held hostage in Bismark’s room.

Bismark now had a hostage and wanted some action. He called down to the hotel desk and informed the hotel manager he had a gun, a hostage, and wanted to kill himself. The police, SWAT team, and hostage negotiators were brought on site. As the hours went by, tensions grew. Frustrated by the negotiations with authorities, at one point Bismark fired a shot into the hotel room. One bullet down and ninety-nine left, the situation became more serious with this display of rage and a peek into Bismark’s past. Over the years, he had been charged with beating his wife three times in the past decade and even threatened her family numerous times over the years with a gun. 

BOOK: Disney Declassified: Tales of Real Life Disney Scandals, Sex, Accidents and Deaths
12.73Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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